The Cristiano Ronaldo knee injury mystery continues to simmer along. For the last couple of Juventus games manager Maurizio Sarri has yanked the forward in the second half much to the 34-year-old’s displeasure, while claiming that he is not fully fit due to a knee injury he picked up in training.
Speaking during a press conference yesterday, Leonardo Bonucci was asked what he thought about Ronaldo’s comments and subsequent performance. The ceteran defender said -
“I like to look forward and not back. There will be time to talk, now I want to think about the national team.
“He will play with Portugal, meaning that he physically he’s better and mentally he’s great as ever.
“When we return to Turin, there will be a way to meet and talk. There are still many games where we’ll need the best Ronaldo.
“I’m convinced that his objective is to improve with respect to the past and help Juventus achieve all their objectives.”
On a personal note, Bonucci recently overtook Alessandro Del Piero as the tenth most-capped player for Italy, and now has his sights set on fellow defender Giacinto Facchetti’s mark of 94, a record he will tie today.
“Reaching 94 caps like Facchetti is important for me. I’m fired up as it is to reach Gianluca Zambrotta’s 98.
“The important thing, then, is to show, against Bosnia that Italy treat every game in the same way. Of course, we’ll need desire and sacrifice to show we want to stay on our path with Roberto Mancini, who gave the Italian people their enthusiasm back.
“A lot has changed from the Sweden game, the coach but also the FIGC president who’s given us a breath of fresh air.
“Mancini’s very good at making us feel like a strong team, which we hadn’t felt like since our failure to qualify for the World Cup.
“It’s also thanks to a new philosophy: the first form of defence here is attack. It had been seen just before Mancini arrived.”
The defender will today play against Bosnia-Herzegovina, who will have Scudetto rival, AS Roma striker Edin Dzeko.
“Dzeko’s a truly great, international-level player and not just for Bosnia. He’s done very well in so many different Leagues.
“He has physical strength, technique and ruthlessness in front of the goal: I really like him.
“However, we’ve studied the first game, where we suffered: now we know how to mark him better.”